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Microrivets for MEMS packaging: concept, fabrication, and strength testing

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2 Author(s)
B. Shivkumar ; Int. Rectifier Corp., El Segundo, CA, USA ; C. -J. Kim

Microriveting is introduced as a novel and alternative joining technique to package MEMS devices. In contrast to the existing methods, mostly surface bonding, the reported technique joins two wafer pieces together by riveting, a mechanical joining means. Advantages include wafer joining at room temperature and low voltage, and relaxed requirements for surface preparation. The microrivets, which hold a cap-base wafer pair together, are formed by filling rivet holes through electroplating. The cap wafer has a recess to house the MEMS devices and also has through-holes to serve as rivet molds. The seed layer on the base wafer becomes the base of the rivet. The process requires only simple mechanical clamping of the wafer pair during riveting, compared with the more involved procedures needed for wafer bonding. Directionality of electroplating in an electric field is what makes this process simple and robust. Strength testing is carried out to evaluate the joining with microrivets. Different modes of rivet failure under different loading conditions are identified and investigated. Effective strength between 7 and 11 MPa was measured under normal loading with nickel microrivets. Joining strengths comparable to conventional wafer bonding processes, ease of fabrication with repeatability, and compatibility with batch fabrication show that microriveting is a feasible technique to join wafers for MEMS packaging, especially when hermetic sealing is not essential

Published in:

Journal of Microelectromechanical Systems  (Volume:6 ,  Issue: 3 )